Welcome Winter at the Observatory-iest Spot Around

Griffith Observatory will offer a pair of free public programs on Thursday, Dec. 21.

What to Know

  • Thursday, Dec. 21 at local noon and sunset
  • Free
  • Learn more about the event from observatory staffers

If you had some sort of wallclock thingamabob device-y that didn't track the seconds and minutes and hours but rather just the equinoxes and solstices, you'd hear but four chimes a year.

And a solstice wall clock thingamabob device-y? That's only going to ring twice a year, in June and December, meaning you'd be anticipating the chime for days, if not weeks, given its rarity, compared to the passing of our minutes and hours.

If you own such a thingamabog, well, A) you're so lucky, and B), it's about chime in honor of the arrival of the Winter Solstice.

Keep an ear out at 8:28 a.m. on the morning of Thursday, Dec. 21, for that's when autumn takes its final and grand bow and gives way to the coldest and darkest of seasons.

A season, though, that is also brimming with the light of holiday celebrations, and the hope-filled start of a new year, and the glacial gifts of winter (depending where you're at, of course; winter may be described as more glittery than glacial in Southern California, though it is blowing in quite coldly in 2017).

Welcoming winter? You can, for free, while absorbing fascinating facts aplenty, at the great and glorious Griffith Observatory on Thursday, Dec. 21. 

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A pair of public programs will take place, as they always do at the landmark come an equinox or solstice.

Be there at local noon and/or again at sundown to learn more about what's behind the longest night of the year, and our nearest star, and our planet's axis, and all of that science-based wonderment.

We say "and/or" because, let's be real: There are some hardcore solstice fans out there, and attending both may be in the plans for some or all of them.

As is right and good and high-five-able.

For knowing more about these annual events is a positive, just like owning a solstice clock thingamabob that lets us know when winter, and then summer, then winter again, and then summer, has officially, astronomically commenced.

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